BarcelonaThe umbrella of Ronald Koeman, the pragmatic and sincere coach and idol of Barcelona that Joan Laporta kept before Messi’s traumatic farewell, has been punctured. The goring is multidirectional when the weakest Barça in recent years has only played four official matches. The last of all, Bayern Munich’s European rematch at the Camp Nou (0-3), served the annoyance of the Catalan president, who met in the morning with his closest collaborators to study the disaster . Without any decision being made, the next day he recorded a video to express outrage and on Thursday preferred not to expose himself to journalists at an institutional event at the Damm Factory. He ran the risk of being asked about the situation on the bench. And they had not yet seen the light of day the impressions that Koeman and his agent poured against him in a documentary shot in the Netherlands. The coach comes out criticizing Laporta for keeping him in office with a small mouth, while Rob Jansen appears to accuse the president of being a hypocrite.
Koeman expresses his disillusionment with the president even when he has time to shape his speech. He has his head held high despite knowing that he does not arouse confidence in the board and that it will be played next week in three league matches against theoretically easy rivals (Granada, Cádiz and Levante). He also knows, through vice-president Eduard Romeu, that Barça does have money for a dismissal, which weakens him even more and puts the focus on a list of possible relays that has not changed much since May, when the dismissal of the Dutchman was about to take place. Of course, in the event of a short-term drift, Laporta already has Jordi Cruyff’s refusal to sit on the bench. The sports management adviser, whom the president presented as a “wildcard” in his day, does not want to replace Koeman and goes in the line of caution of Mateu Alemany and Ramon Planes, supporters of holding a coach who now even with the full staff of injured, he has few arguments to excel at.
With Cruyff reluctant to go down to the dressing room, which frustrates one of the scenarios that Laporta had in mind, and with the ultimatum hovering over the figure of the current coach, the internal debate at Barça on a possible change that would come with almost the entire season ahead. Names that already sounded in May appear again on the Catalan horizon, most with contracts in force and without a clear consensus around them.
The only possible option in the house
With Francesc Xavier García Pimienta out of the club because the board decided to change him to Sergi Barjuan in the subsidiary, the only way the house is valued at the Camp Nou is in the name of Albert Capellas. Avignon, who will turn 54 on October 1, left the management of the Danish under-21 team to return to Barça, specifically in training football. He was part of the B coaching staff between 1999 and 2003 and then made a career, always as an assistant, in the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Israel and China. In the last two countries he met Jordi Cruyff, who values his methods and is one of the main defenders of his return to the club, although not to coach. Capellas has never led any top-tier locker room, but his style of play fits what Laporta unsuccessfully asks Koeman to do.
Part of the board insists on betting on the egarenc
“We tried to convince him, but it wasn’t possible.” They are the voices of the board in favor of Xavi’s immediate commitment to Laporta’s refusal to bless the return of the Egarenc to occupy the Barça bench. If the former Barça captain did not replace Koeman at the end of last season, it was mainly due to the doubts of the president and the sports management. Those who had more information about the planning were the least favorable to put the team in the hands of Xavi, who was willing to take on the challenge and now, with the season started in Qatar, still has an escape clause in case of call culer. The native of Vallès, however, would continue to call for structural changes in the methodology department and medical services.
And Thierry Henry, his assistant
They point out from the environment of Leo Messi that Bob Martínez was one of the coaches promised by Laporta during the talks on sports planning that took place during the negotiations with the Argentine. Balaguer’s coach has had a career of merit in England and is currently the coach of Belgium. He is used to dealing with top-level players and is committed to showy football rich in tactical nuances, although he shows a predilection for systems with three centers. In case of generating consensus at Barça as a substitute for Koeman, his main impediment is contractual, as he is committed to the Belgian federation until the end of 2022, when the Qatar World Cup is played. His assistant head is an old acquaintance of the Camp Nou: Thierry Henry.
Erik ten Hag
Guardiola endorses the Ajax coach
The fourth name on this list is the Dutch fashion coach, responsible for the irruption of footballers like Frenkie de Jong or Matthijs de Ligt in Ajax who eliminated Real Madrid from the Champions 18/19 and who fell in extremis in the semifinals against Tottenham. Ten Hag continues to lead the set Ajax player and he has a contract in force, but the endorsement of Pep Guardiola, who has always said wonders about him, is important for those in charge of deciding the future of the bench to consider taking him to mid-season. Santpedor knows him well from Bayern Munich, where he worked as a coach for the subsidiary team.